On the question of the color yellow....

woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)March 22, 2014

SunnyBorders, on the Mammoth mums thread, raised the issue of why yellow is often not a favorite color in the garden. I have pondered on that issue many times, since I'm one of those people who do not consider yellow a favorite color in the garden.
Yet I have a very large patch of yellow in a prominent place in the garden - the house!

My issues with yellow in the garden boil down to these:

- first and foremost is that I associate yellow foliage with unhealthy plants - e.g. deficiencies of various sorts or plants stressed by insects, fungus, too much or too little water etc. - so that has tended to make yellow/yellow-green foliage and yellow variegations seem unattractive to me. When you think of it, yellow is also associated with disease in people too - think jaundice and liver diseases....

- the second issue is that I find 'yellow' flowers often come in rather harsh colors - either an acid-yellow or opaque, muddy golds, that don't fit easily in the continuum from soft yellow to orange, so they often seem like a brash intruder that draws attention to itself and doesn't care about fitting in! :-)

Back in 2009 I had an 'epiphany' moment re yellow in the garden during a visit to a garden on the local garden tour. The front garden clearly had a blue and yellow theme going. There was one very striking yellow combination - which I've posted here many times before I think. I loved that combination but was also struck by the fact that the garden would have, IMO, been much more attractive if the largest part of the rest of the yellow-foliaged/variegated plants has been grouped near each other rather that being spotted around fairly randomly amongst the blues. I have been itching to make a yellow garden ever since seeing that garden, and this combination in particular:

I posted pictures last summer of the 'golden path' I've started to develop under the pines in the backyard. It's too shady there to use a yellow peony but the yellow theme there will, I think, work out well - assuming things survive this dreadful winter!

But all that still doesn't make me inclined to add yellow in sunny front part of the garden, although I have been adding oranges in a continuum from pale peachy colors to rusty oranges and reds. The big dollop of yellow that is the house is, I think, a big inhibiting factor as any yellow would need to be compatible with that and I just don't think that blocks of yellow or gold would compete harmoniously with the house color. I have tried several yellow flowers in the past (yellow hollyhocks and yellow scabiosa) but removed them after the first year. So now the yellow in the front garden is largely limited to anthers in the flowers!

Your thoughts on yellow...? How do you use it in the garden?

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Yellow is my favorite color. It always reminds me of sunshine and I love the sun. I do like hints of yellow in the garden and I have them all through my flower beds. My yellow flowers. Put next to a dark color it makes both colors pop. My favorite color combination lately is mahogany like Cappuccino Rudbeckia Next to a bright yellow like Moonstruck lemon yellow marigold. The large powder puff lemon yellow marigold look striking next to the large daisy like deep mahogany of the cappuccino. Although both of these are annual the Cappuccino often winters over.

I have other yellow plants and other color combinations too spread all through my flower beds

I think my love of yellow flowers stems from my childhood. We lived in a big old house with a front porch. Yellow climbing roses encircled each of the porch pillars. I can still remember sitting on that porch with the scent of roses surrounding me and those sunny flowers peeking around the pillars

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 6:15PM
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Campanula UK Z8

There are no colours I am less than enthusiastic about...but I can rarely stand for stripes,picotees and other mixed and faintly unnatural looking markings....although there are caveats in that I have more enthusiasm for 'natural' colourations as opposed to highly hybridised (and often large and even doubled) blooms (with especial dislike reserved for rose abominations such as the awful Simsalabim or Abracadabra)....and I can think of less than a handful of variagated plants I would tolerate (and of those I would allow, none are noted for flowers.
Picky, picky, picky.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 7:41PM
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I love yellow flowers & I can't see why anyone wouldn't??

Mother nature seems to heartily agree that yellow is good since there are so many yellow blooming plants along the roads, in meadows & fields everywhere.

I have a lot of yellows since I plant many natives & some of the yellows bloom heavily & non stop from early spring to frost. Its hard to beat that for brightening up any garden. I cannot even imagine a garden without yellow for balance, even if my house was yellow, which it isn't. Wouldn't matter if it was but then I never sat & analyzed it either.

Variegated foliage is another matter entirely. It looks artificial as if its trying too hard to be something else & I don't care for it at all so guess that makes me picky too.

Nah, picky is not liking yellow, now thats picky.

Butterfly on Damianita. One of my favorite plants.

This post was edited by TexasRanger10 on Sat, Mar 22, 14 at 20:48

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 8:18PM
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While yellow isn't my absolute favorite color, it definitely has its uses in my garden beds. It especially offers contrast to the predominant color green that's in such abundance in many landscape scenarios.

I prefer pale yellow rather than the more intense shades but if a plant blooms in vivid yellow + offers sustenance to pollinators, I tend to be more tolerant of it than I might otherwise be. Given my druthers, I prefer white as a contrast for more vivid hues.

When I saw the first bloom on my 'Irish Eyes' Rudbeckia, I was completely sold on them as garden companions. The combination of yellow petals with that green center dome was stunning.

How do I use yellow in the garden? Generally I don't. Other than daylilies, I tend to leave the color scheme to Mother Nature since she's had a few million years' more experience than I have at garden design.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 8:32PM
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I don't normally post in this forum, but saw it in the recent posts column and had to chime in. I love yellow. I've painted the interior of all my previous houses yellow. I love yellow in the garden. I'd love to have a yellow house, But I'd probably hold back on planting yellow flowers because I'd want the flowers to show up against the house.

My favorite way to plant flowers is to plant them in groups by color and contrast them against each other for visual effect. I like my flowers to be bright colors and to be visible from the street. I plant a grouping of bright yellow flowers closet to my front door. Next to that, I add a darker color flower like a bright red, deep burgundy or a purple. Next to the darker color, i plant an orange or a white. I have mainly pansies in my garden right now along with daffodils and whatever perennials survived the winter. In the summer I use different types of plants for the effect. For instance, I might have purple salvia next to the daisy looking orange zinnia and white vinca. Next to that might be regular red and then yellow zinnias. There are evergreen shrubs next to the house for the background. The bright colors pop against that.

Just realized I was mainly talking about annuals and this is the perennial forum. My current flower garden is less than a year old so I'm still developing it. I like to have flowers blooming for all four seasons if possible. I have mums for greenery during the main part of the year. I also do the contrasting colors for show in the fall. I have a yellow Esperanza planted next to a bright red hibiscus planted next to a blue/purple butterfly bush. I plan to also plant an orange tea rose with this grouping when I find one later this summer. I planted red and yellow daylillies yesterday. Hopefully, they look good next to the fuchsia dianthus.

This post was edited by adellabedella on Sat, Mar 22, 14 at 21:50

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 9:02PM
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This is my favorite fall blooming shrub, Ericameria nauseosa. It is smothered in tiny yellow flowers each fall drawing butterflies and bees by the hundreds. My house is white but it would never stop me from planting white blooming plants.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 9:13PM
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diggerdee zone 6 CT

ooh, I love yellow and am actually rather surprised to see that some people might not actually like it, lol!

I can't say that yellow dominates my garden, but I do love to have yellow blooms. I feel it goes well with many colors. It goes well with the blues and purples I love so much, and if a nice soft yellow, can work with the pinks I throw in as well. Yellow perennial digitalis and soft yellow roses come to mind.

And last year I started a yellow and orange and red bed (red is my least favorite color in the garden, but I feel compelled to try some and think it works well with the oranges and yellows).

One of my favorite blooms is the native golden rod which grows wild in my yard. Love the yellow blooms.

And while this is the perennials forum, I grow a lot of annuals, and used to sell bouquets, and you can't beat yellow in spring and fall bouquets. And there are sooooo many beautiful yellow annuals.

Not big on yellow foliage though. Like woodyoak, I feel yellow foliage just looks more sickly than not, even though I admit it always catches my eye... at first. I do however love the chartreuse-foliaged plants, and have been looking around for a good sized gold chamaecyparis. I last year I planted some yellow-twig dogwoods.

So, thumbs up for yellow from me!


P.S. - welcome abellabedella! I have found myself reading and even posting to forums I never even looked at before because of that new "recent posts" feature as well!

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 10:12PM
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Personally I do use it in combination,

And especially for spring bulbs, nothing id more cheery than a classic yellow daffodil

Sometimes I do planting design for private gardens. And more than once I came across Mrs-no-yellow. Yellow is toooo vulgar, they want a chic color scheme of pastels, pinks etc.

And I remember an article by a garden historian (and designer) who dissed yellow totally on the grounds of it being so common, listing yellow flowering plants like Solidago that he strongly disliked.

It depends on context as well, and sometimes yellow (flowers) just doesn't fit. A collegue of mine went so far as not to use yellow flowering stuff when doing planting designs, declining when I offered a bunch of Dahlia (mainly yellows),

not sure it was a strong personal issue in her case.

Bye, Lin

    Bookmark   March 23, 2014 at 2:25AM
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floral_uk z.8/9 SW UK

There are yellows I love and yellows I love less but on the whole I like them. My shower room is a pale sunshine yellow purely because it brightens me up on a dark winter morning. However, in my tiny plot, apart from the daffs which come at a time when I'll take any colour going, I prefer paler primrose and lemon yellows. I wouldn't be without our native Primula vulgaris. I have no yellow at all later in the year just because the garden is too small to take a large range of colours. But If I had more space yellows would be there. I agree with woodyoak about much yellow foliage - much of it just looks sick to me. And any variegations I do like are purely for the leaves and not for the flowers. I really don't like those variegated phloxes for example. Far too busy.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2014 at 3:12AM
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Being chic when it comes to gardening seems rather pretentious. Reminds me of interior decoration intended to impress others with taste & wealth. Landscaping often comes across the same way, so I'm not surprised yellow might be considered plebian.

Us riff-raff like to use yeller, we think its as good as any other color.

This post was edited by TexasRanger10 on Sun, Mar 23, 14 at 3:55

    Bookmark   March 23, 2014 at 3:20AM
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Campanula UK Z8

Ah yes, Linaria .....that's exactly where I come across the no-yellow brigade - private clients. Occasionally, this tips into no red or orange either.....although not, so far, an instruction against 'vile magenta'.

Yep, I have been drawn into the recent posts thing too.

Seems like yellow foliage is a bit of a no-no.....while I adore lime next to purple (molucella and euphorbias, with lunaria rediviva and linaria purpurea.....our kitchen is in the same colours - our house was built in 1963)......or deep claret next to orange (Arabian night Dahlia with tithonias).....

    Bookmark   March 23, 2014 at 6:27AM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

I avoid orange, that's about it. I enjoy orange, but I find I don't like the way it looks with yellow or pink and I evidently have a lot of those colors. And the few times I've used it, I always manage to forget some plant nearby that blooms at that same time that clashes. So I've ripped out every orange plant I ever used at this point. [g] Which were only a few.

Yellow I use, in it's pale or pure shades. I don't enjoy orangey yellows, or gold yellows. I haven't consciously planned to, but I have ended up using yellow to tone down and blend other color combinations in the same way some people use white.

There are so many attributes about a plant to like that I don't want it to come down to just a color choice. So by leaving out orange and orangey gold yellows, I cancel out color as a variable for the most part. Any plant I choose then will fit somewhere in the garden.

But, I do feel an urge for a departure from my usual. I love oranges, reds, purples and dark foliage together, but I wouldn't want a whole garden of that color combo. If I could make that switch easily in just one bed, I'd like a nice change for awhile. But it does sound like too much work, and I would have to find a new place to put all the pinks and yellows to hold them until I wanted them back. [g]

Very pretty photo, Texas Ranger! Your Damianita is new to me, I like it a lot.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2014 at 7:42AM
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floral_uk z.8/9 SW UK

Another thought. I think a lot depends on the light where you garden. For example, in a hot sunny climate brighter contrasting colours can look great, whereas in a greyer climate with weaker sunlight they can just look brash. Much like those fabulous fabrics you buy on holiday but can't find a use for when you get home.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2014 at 7:50AM
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Yellow is nature! I can't imagine a garden looking inviting without that color. It is second only to green IMHO.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2014 at 9:51AM
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mxk3(Zone 6 SE MI)

I like yellow flowers in certain circumstances.

In the backyard, I go for a calm, serene feel - yellow is not that. I enjoy bright yellow daffodils and crocus in the spring and flamin' yellow mums in the fall, though - yellow just looks "right" these times of the years. In the summer, though, I favor soft pinks, blues/purples, and white in my backyard space.

In the front of the house, I choose colors based on what looks good with the house - curb appeal and all that. Yellow wouldn't look good, I'm afraid...at least not in my opinion.

Funny, though - I love bright yellow flowers in the house. I usually have a vase of mums or spider mums on the table, and in the summer there is nothing cheerier than a vase of sunflowers to brighten the inside. :0)

    Bookmark   March 23, 2014 at 11:02AM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

I certainly don't have a no-yellow-at-all policy in the garden. It's just not on my favorites list. Yellow is one of the colors that I consider an 'individualist' rather than a 'team player'! I'm mainly thinking of the yellow-gold colors here - that is highly visible and dominant (domineering...?) Think of the yellows that are used to paint caution lines on the edges of stairs or subway platforms. That color is used because it is strong enough to remain visible to those with considerable vision impairment. Flowers in that gold range are never going to be good at blending into a quieter picture! They want to be the center of attention and, to me, that is how they work best in a garden e.g. I don't like black-eyed-Susans dotted into a mixed bed - but think they look great in masses especially in front of a darker background where they can shine intensely. They can also work with with other intense/rich colors, but that could easily cross the line from rich and vibrant to downright gaudy so would need to be planned with more care than I'd want to invest :-)

The softer yellows are better 'team players' that are mellow and mingle happily. Unfortunately there seems to be fewer garden plants in the softer tones.

Sunshine yellow and spring do seem to go together and my favorite yellow combination in the garden appears near the first of May (although goodness knows when it'll appear this year!) I've posted this picture before many times I'm sure - I call it 'essence of sunshine' :-)

Turkestanica botanical tulips and 'Ivory Floradale' tulips

Ivory Floradale are my absolute favorite tulips. They naturalize well and, most interesting, are a lovely sunshine-yellow in early spring but then fade to creamy white in time to pair with later-flowering tulips like here with Queen of the Night and Angelique:

So you get two-for-the-price-of-one plus the clumps get bigger each year.

My other favorite yellow spring bulb is Cream Beauty crocus, a nice soft yellow that I much prefer to the stronger yellow crocuses. I can't seem to find a picture of that one at the moment. I don't have yellow daffodils. I prefer the white pheasant's eye narcissus (Narcissus poeticus var. recurvus) because that was what grew in the garden in my childhood (they were planted 100 or so years before by one of my great-grandmothers and were still going strong!) Their scent is divine! Unfortunately, like many of the nostalgia-plants from my youth, they do not like the conditions here so I've pretty much given up on planting them.

Many yellow roses are also very attractive. We had a beautiful 'Mountbatten' rose at our previous/first house. It was gorgeous for two years but in the third year it was struck hard by blackspot (those unhealthy yellow leaves....!) No amount of spraying made any difference so, when the problem repeated the next year, the rose was shovel-pruned and I've never planted another yellow rose!

So, there are yellow flowers in my garden - and there will be more yellow foliage if the golden path works out - but yellow flowers are never going to be a big part of the front garden here. None of my comments should be taken as saying yellow-is-bad somehow but I do think it is a color that needs to be used thoughtfully (a handle-with-care Diva! :-)

    Bookmark   March 23, 2014 at 11:03AM
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The only color I have limits on is pink. When I first began gardening, I had a fair amount of pink, but there are too many colors that I don't enjoy with pink. I do have magenta and bluish pinks when like Floral UK it is "at a time when I'll take any colour going" and there's not much else blooming for them to clash with.

The yellow flowers I have tend to be true yellow, sometimes pale and sometimes brighter. I have a lots of daffodils since the voles won't eat them and a large forsythia which I wouldn't be without as it's the earliest reliable spring bloomer after vernal witch hazel. It not only has yellow spring flowers, but also fall color and yellow winter branches that are tall enough to reach above the snow, so it's a three season shrub for me. Both those plants are part of my early color and help brighten up gardens that really only have bare ground and evergreens at that point.
From April 28, 2013

I really enjoy yellows and blues or purples together with pops of orange and have one bed in which those three colors predominate.
From June 21, 2013

I have a number of "yellow" foliaged plants, but IME they are largely chartreuse. I like the way they light up shady spots, and the evergreens provide contrast to the dark greens of the woods here during our 5 months of winter.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2014 at 11:20AM
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aftermidnight Zone7b B.C. Canada

Yellow is one of my least favorite colours so why is my garden full of yellow? I put it down to I must have a split personality LOL.
My favorites are the cool colors, blues, purples, mauves with touches of white and maybe a touch of lemon yellow, see it even sneaks in here too :).


    Bookmark   March 23, 2014 at 11:29AM
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Thyme2dig NH Zone 5

I was never a big fan of yellow and would never "seek out" yellow flowers or foliage. But unbeknownst to me, little by little yellow was sneaking into my garden! It wasn't a conscious decision, but over time I must have been drawn to certain yellows and bought them during various nursery trips.

A friend of mine always asked what I had against yellow because she had so much of it in her garden and loved it and she knew I didn't like yellow. A couple years ago as we walked around the garden here she was struck by just how much yellow I had added and said "See, you DO like yellow!" I hadn't even thought about it until she was pointing out foliage and flowers!

Then I realized, I really do love that huge, gorgeous yellow iris I have and the amazing clump of yellow daylilies, and you can't beat the yellows of goldenrod later in the season. Clumps of coreopsis 'Zagreb' and, like Gardenweed, I've been struck by how great 'Irish Eyes' is in the garden and also added 'Prairie Sun'. Start both from seed even. ME, starting yellow flowering plants from seed! I never thought I'd see the day, so call me a convert!......especially since I'm redesigning 3 garden beds and the main theme is going to be a repeat of the same rose.......a YELLOW one!!

    Bookmark   March 23, 2014 at 11:39AM
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I kind of agree that if you use the flowers that are what I call "school bus yellow", they have to be used carefully. They make school buses that color for a reason! Next to a yellow house they always make it look dingy I think. But I plan to have lots of them out in the xeriscape section, where I will pair all kinds of colors in a kind of shocking way. There is nothing backing it but old barns and decomposing sheds and the vegetable garden, so it needs to kind of pop. And I really like heliopsis, so I have some of that, too in a wetter section backed by a board fence and not the house. I've been starting to decide where to actually put some of the plants that I moved here from the other house and plopped down indiscriminately, and have started a blue and yellow section. I've decided that a lot of the boldly variegated plants don't really show up much from far away, and so they really should be kept to containers maybe, or places that you might see close up. They look cool at the greenhouse, and always disappoint me when I get them home and planted and look at them from out the window.

Those floradale tulips are really nice. I like the Mt Hood daffs that I have for the same reason, the yellow to white effect.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2014 at 12:25PM
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Interesting comments above.
And interesting/great pictures.

I tend to be single-minded. I perennial garden for colour.
Not liking a colour seems like not liking one of your children.

I do agree that certain colours seem to go together, e.g. the colour range of the crocuses in spring or the colour range of the garden phlox in summer.

I'm quite hostile to non-gardeners (notably, those that don't do the labour) when they try to dictate to others about garden colour schemes.

I fundamentally agree with David Tomlinson at Merlin's Hollow; namely, in a mixed perennial garden use plants that work. Re team players (interesting points Woodyoak), I take players who are non-runners and non-seeders to be infinitely more important than potential colour clashes.

There is the problem that in a mixed perennial garden, it's necessary to use a wide range of different plants to get changing colour all the way from April to October (here).

The best I can think of is have lots of different perennials, but have a few more/larger blocks/threads of one type of plant (timed to flower at different points through the growing season) to try to tie things together.

Below May 21, 2013:

    Bookmark   March 23, 2014 at 12:37PM
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christinmk z5b eastern WA

-Kevin, lovely shot. What wonderful waves of plants and colors...do you happen to know the variety of that purple tulip?

Guess I'm kind of the opposite in my thinking though. Perhaps that omitted shade would (design-wise) bring more balance/definition to your garden. But why plant something you don't like?

I personally dislike hot pinks/magenta. I'm on the fence with yellow. Sometimes a plant is so cool that I can't help but ignore the fact that it is in a shade I'm not otherwise crazy about.

I love variegated plants. There is something about them so peculiar and fascinating. That being said, I am a plant geek and like the oddities ;-)

I also like variegated golds in the landscape. To my mind, variegated foliage breaks up massive plantings of all green. It gives a focal point/exclamation point in a planting. Gold variegates are warm and glowing- especially useful if you have a dark and gloomy deep shade area.
That being said, I could understand wanting to avoid variegation if you are going for the more serene/subtle/naturalistic look. ;-)


    Bookmark   March 23, 2014 at 1:35PM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

Opinionated me here again.... :-)

Variegated plants are things I started out being dubious about but have come to like - and use - quite a lot. Like many things, I think the key is to use them in a focused way rather than planting at random so to speak. I use white or silver variegation most often as it best suits the feel of my garden, particularly in the 'green' backyard where green and white are the dominant colors. The golden forestgrass in that picture with the yellow peony at the top of the thread has become my favorite yellow variegation. There are fewer variegated plants in the front garden - a Carol Mackie daphne and this combination of Emerald Gaiety euonymus and Henryi clematis that I have high hopes will someday (years from now for the euonymus part of the partnership!) cover the iron arbour in the front garden. The clematis is off to a good start but the euonymus is going to be very slow to get tall. Last year, when a red clematis that I thought we had dug out reappeared on one side of the arbour, I added a red one on the other side too in order to provide a red and white combination until the euonymus grows up. I'll have to wait and see whether the reds will eventually have to go or whether the three will work well for the longer term.

Someone (campanula...?) mentioned not being keen on flowers that have been doubled or streaked or otherwise made 'fancy'. I'm in agreement with that - I tend to prefer the simpler version of most flowers.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2014 at 2:50PM
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Hmmmm......maybe the love of yellow (and in my case, I'd expand that to orange also) is somewhat dependent on where one is located? Here in the PNW, gray can be a very pervasive atmospheric color. And an assortment of deep greens your basic year round garden color, often creating dense shade as they go. Yellows and oranges are most welcome to brighten the day, lighten the shade and provide contrast to the green. They make you happy :-)

Plus, I think pastels are wimpy.....but that's just me!!

I will agree on yellow foliaged plants - some work; some don't.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2014 at 6:57PM
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CMK, the blue/purple tulip is 'Blue Beauty'.

"Opinionated me here again" (Woodyoak):
I'd say your opinions are informed; hence, who should complain?

I too have grown to use variegated perennials. As said, what sold me on them initially was David Tomlinson saying a variegated form may be less vigorous than the equivalent non-variegated form. Example Lysomackia punctata, which as variegated 'Alexander', may well be usable in a mixed perennial bed.

Also, I'm all for "the Green", but in terms of gardens, anything rather than green, on green, (on green, on green ---).

    Bookmark   March 23, 2014 at 7:24PM
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Interesting & insightful comments posted above--thanks all! Gave me a few ideas plus one or two chuckles.

Stunning photo SunnyBorders! What's the purple draped over what appears to be a fence in the background? Also a question--how do you keep tulips year after year?

I think every dedicated gardener has a vision in his/her head of how their garden should look. Until he/she achieves that vision, the garden isn't "finished." Don't hate me but I got 95% of the way there a few years ago thanks to winter sowing & planting seed-grown, tough perennials, shrubs & trees. The garden beds still require a great deal of seasonal maintenance but I'm happy with where my garden and I are at since we got here together.

I DO like variegated plants--the green/white hosta variegation of 'Dream Weaver' & 'Revolution' brightens up the shady north side of my garage. Euonymus seems to do the same at the corner of my part-sun bed beside the front garden path. Carex/Japanese sedge grass 'Ice Dance' does the job along the curved edge of another bed.

woodyoak - I too grow 'Carol Mackie' Daphne on the north side of my property on a gradual slope--planted it several years ago in memory of my grandmother. There was also quite a bit more euonymus growing here when I moved to this garden where I grew up.

gardengal48 - one of the variegated euonymus that was growing here when I moved in produced pure yellow foliage that I never had the heart to either prune back or dig out. I decided to just let it do its thing.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2014 at 8:15PM
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PM, I like orange myself but have the hardest time finding plants that bloom true orange. We have the native Texas horrida variety of lantana & Indian Blanket will look orange from a distance since its yellow & red but real orange is rare. Trumpet vine. There's another. The Damianitia smells strongly medicinal & grows wild around the Edwards Plateau & Trans Pecos in NM. Its just about at its hardiness limit in zone 7.

I tossed out some annual Mexican poppy seed for some yellow orange earlier this spring. There's a orange variety of Flame Acanthus I'm looking for, mine is the red kind. I got a Skeletonleaf goldenweed I was real happy to get in a plant trade last fall, blooms yellow.

My main deal is attracting pollinators and saving water & I personally like all colors mixed together. Guess it makes a difference what kind of garden a person has but I like the visitors buzzing round.

Like Rhyse, I can't think of nature or picture a garden without yellow, its such a happy color. Yellow is by far the dominant color come late summer & fall which fits the season, wouldn't even look like late summer here without it. Spring has more pink & purple and definitely more green. Sometimes green almost shuts down or flies north come late summer.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2014 at 9:10PM
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diggerdee zone 6 CT

I'm an absolute sucker for variegated foliage, and really have to restrain myself in its use in the garden.

The comments on orange made me chuckle. I used to detest orange and never thought I would ever have it in my garden, but little by little, free-seed-packet-with-your-order by free-seed-packet-with-your-order (I was beginning to think the free seeds were always orange because no one else liked them either and that's what the companies gave away!), and due to the occasional mis-labeled or mistakenly-sent orange plant, I came to like orange. And when I started growing lots of annuals for my bouquet sales, I was fully hooked. Two of my biggest sellers were orange tiger lilies with dark purple hydrangeas and chartreuse dill sprigs, and later in the season, hot pink/magenta zinnias with orange zinnias. Quite the departure for lil' ol' pastel-pink me!

P.S. Beautiful photo, SunnyBorders!

    Bookmark   March 23, 2014 at 9:54PM
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GW, it's a small lilac that's drooping. Re tulip bulbs, I need to plant new vole-edible spring bulbs (notably the crocuses and tulips) every fall.

I'd say the mixed perennial beds are never finished and always look best as the result of ongoing maintenance.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 12:08AM
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wantonamara Z8 CenTex

IN semi and arid areas we would be up against a wall with a nakid garden if we did not have yellow. Not many blue and purple flowers that last for long. The harsh brilliant light will tone down the brightess of flowers so pale flowers only really work in the shade or backed by shadow. Our palettes are a little more limited once the spring has passed. Our plants need more room for moisture gathering so the piling up of different colors in close proximity is more difficult. all this conversation of color theory in the garden is interesting and a little alien for me. I am more controlled by the combining of glaucus colors of grasses and agaves with the darker greens more standard greens of other varieties. flowers happen and then are gone. They are a surprise. Not many flowers hold color for a long time. I garden with wildflowers mostly. I garden mostly for the foliage and structure. I also like to garden in masses and textures Red and Yellow are a braindead combination down here. My husband calls them the comic book colors….. His shop is a magenta and galvalume siding, light blue green grey eaves a cinderblock accent combined in a modern semi industrial look. I have yellow cow pen daisies and orange tecoma stand planted by it with ipomosis rubra and prickly pear. Few plants hold color for a long time. .I would like to get some red coral bean tree going there. Dark free sago palm looks really good by the magenta siding. Yellow bitterweeed comes up around the the dark greens of the sago palm. I like yellow and white and yellow and silver with the dark and lighter grey greens of the xeric plants. I won't stick up my nose at yellow and magenta either and I think I heard a garden rule about that. I here a rule and I will go and brake it.

Very rarely do I get a spring like this. It does not last. I'll show some pictures but I will mention that I can not water and when I get 10" of rain or less, things get rangy. My style is wild and rangy. I do not fight it. It is how my land wants to be naturally so I do not fight it.

The last photo is a roadside not far from me in spring. I need to get that tree. It is very fragrant

I like it when nature does not obey the rules.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 1:52AM
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Very interesting, Wontonamara; great pictures.

Reading such entries reminds one how different the possibilities, practicalities, orientations and personalities are for/of different gardening people in different locations.

Funny term, "comic book colours"!

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 9:26AM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

That first photo with the lavender and penstemon? is very pretty. They look great with the rocks.

It must be very different gardening in an arid location. I've never lived anywhere except New England. I think I would wilt there in Texas! :-)

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 11:12AM
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wantonamara Z8 CenTex

More yellows in a Central Texas garden. This one with the Sedum palmerii worked for 5 years and then the heard of deer decided it was on the menu. I am thinking about taking it out because I have not seen it bloom in three years.

The only columbine that grows here is the wild texas yellow Hinkley columbine. I also have the longspurred arizona native. I see the colored Giant Makenna ones in the store but never in anyone's garden. The heat fries them. The columbine normally bloom with the blue Bugleweed and the red Salvia romeriana which is a bright crayola red low to the ground….Comic book colors at its best. I will be lucky to see the masses of dyssodia (prickly leaf dog weed) in the fields this year. They will mass low to the ground in huge drifts and bloom a yellow. There effect from a far is pale yellow because the flowers are small and they merge in a pointilistic way with the pale caliche soil.

The last photo is to show what can be the back drop of soil color and what that does to color perception. I could put down some crushed granite, But this is in the "wild area"

I always love the way the ground glimmers silver under a full moon. It can be difficult to photograph at high noon because it causes blown highlights. We have had maybe 2" of rain since November so right now spring is a mixture of some low green grass pushing through the burnt brown, but it won't last but a few days unless we get rain. The only outdoor watering is from grey water that I manually collect.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 11:17AM
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My what a barrage of comments, picture shows, different points of view came on this prompt! I'm not really talking about yellow (though I'll be very pleased to see the first daffodil in bloom). I wanted to comment on nhbabs photos. Sixteen comments have come since she wrote less than 24 hours ago!! I really appreciate that hillside planting with the Alliums. It represents what I need to work toward on my hill. Yes, we do have hills in Indiana. I have a start on alliums and appreciate a mixed border with evergreens (and ornamental grasses, in my case) mixed with perennials to maintain interest and at the same time reduce maintenance for us 80+ folks who are still gardening.
Thanks Babs!
wontonomara-- I enjoyed looking at your photo, the first one, with lavender, penstemons, and various other things; Raising those plants is just out of the question for me--we have too much water. Thanks for the dream photo.
Now back to the 1 1/2 inch snow possibility we have forcast for tonight!

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 11:18AM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

Very interesting photos wontoamara! In the first group of pictures you posted, what is the mass of silvery-blue foliage in the second picture? Great-looking stuff! The rock-work appeals to me too - are those rocks from your land or cut stone brought in? What kind of stone? What is the pH of the soil? - I'm wondering because rocky areas always make me think of the bluets ( Houstonia caerulea) that grew on rocky hilltops where I grew up on the east coast of Canada. The soil was acidic there. From the botanical name, I wondered if they grew in Texas too.... I just checked a USDA plant profile/distribution map and it showed them in Texas but I didn't think the soil would be right for them. Are you familiar with them? After the spring flush of flowers pass, do you trim things back to highlight the rockwork?

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 11:44AM
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mjc_molie(z6 CT)

Thanks for this thread, woodyoak….it’s brought up strong opinions all around. Love, too, the garden photos ….. these help me to visualize everyone’s points.

TexasRanger’s phrase ‘Picky’ is a good word to use in this thread. These gardens are our creations … for many of us even a form of art as we arrange colors, shapes and flower forms. For that reason, there would be many opinions about yellow.

One problem … don’t know if that’s the right word….I find with yellows is the contrast between the warmer yellow-orange golds and the cooler lemon yellows. Though I like each, I try to keep these separate in the garden because they conflict, in my opinion.

I do love the look of lemon yellow or chartreuse foliage against darks, as in your long border, nhbabs. Your use of various textured and colored shrubs and evergreens intermixed with flowers is spectacular.

And of course, there’s SunnyBorder’s point about using a wide range of plants to get colors from spring to fall. As shown in her photo, bulbs and shrubs can add punches of color that change the look of the garden through the seasons.

Wantonamara… such beautiful gardens! The textures in your 2nd & 4th photo are smashing. I think that gardening with your environment makes sense and produces results that settle into the surroundings. It would be weird if you had tried to create an English cutting garden…. that garden would look phony …. as if dropped down from the sky. Your Texas garden shows that we can have magnificent gardens in every climate.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 11:48AM
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wantonamara Z8 CenTex

The silvery mass is a Atemesia ludoviciana "Valery Finnis". It stays smaller and well behaved in more friendly garden conditions but it LOVED being moved out to this alkaline rubble. It took off. I need to cut it back to the ground. This is what it is like in fall. I love that it has an out of control swoop of movement. That contrast so nicely with the centered rosettes of the dark agaves.

The rock was scavenged from a ranch that was in transition into a huge mall. I should have taken more. But the scorpion that bit me made me pack up and go home with only two loads of rock in my 16" trailer. I kick myself today. They had a bunch of honeycomb limestone. I think someone had been a mason on the ranch because there was many piles of rock scrap in different cuts.

After the spring flush is past I do not trim. I let nature do most of that. I do some weeding , but the bitterwedd and fall flowers start coming up. We have early spring, late spring, salvias in summer, and then a summer dormancy in late july and August and then September brings a host of bloom , the Blackfoot daisy and 4nerve daisy is joined with Liatris, cow pen daisies and salvias. Bitterweed is one of those that will go on forever.

The bluets looks like they might be in far East Texas. That is a different country. Acid soil and lots and lots of rain. It is either sandy soil, sandy loam or black gumbo clay there. We are extremely alkaline, rocky and dry. I am experimenting with a native amsonia for some pale blues out in the scree. They are pushing four stems out of the rock. I hope the deer don't like them.

This post was edited by wantonamara on Mon, Mar 24, 14 at 12:22

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 12:17PM
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Wantonamara, what is the mass of orange along the roadside you shot? Man, thats something else. Wasn't I just talking about orange?

I'm planting more of the Ericameria with the ApachePlume in an area, we shot this photo on a trip, really like the mix. It will be silver all summer & a mass of solid yellow come fall & white all winter. I love this combo of soft pink + silver. These I plan to keep trimmed low at about 3+ feet. Took out some big cactus to clear a spot.

I don't have that Valerie Finnis, just the old Silver King standby variety. V.F. looks shorter, may have to pick some up.

Love those orange shrubs---I bet its zone 8. That would figure.

This post was edited by TexasRanger10 on Mon, Mar 24, 14 at 13:51

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 1:03PM
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Speaking of yellow & pink, do you have a clue to what kind of tree this is? I think its Texas but not sure. Do you love the purple three awn or what? And is that englemannii a good enough contrast for ya? I got this offline some time back & put it in my Ideas File.

This post was edited by TexasRanger10 on Mon, Mar 24, 14 at 13:53

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 1:20PM
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More yellow and pink from last summer.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 1:32PM
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wantonamara Z8 CenTex

The tree is Huisache tree (Acasia farenasiana) It is barely 8b , more 9. There are old trees in Austin and just west of it. But we are JUST outside its range . I might be able to squeeze it in on the south side smack up against some thermal mass.

Your yellow tree is Retama, Jerusalem Thorn,Mexican paloverde, Parkinsonia aculeata. It is a repeat bloomer timed with summer rains (if you are lucky to have any). Great colors with the silver and pink. Zone 8.

Here is a link that might be useful: Retama Tree

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 1:38PM
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wantonamara Z8 CenTex

OK now , thats what I like .Successfully Breaking rules. Who comes up with these rules. I took color theory in college but I hardly think about it now. I just grab and plant more to what can LIVE and survive with the amount of killer sun and thin soil. I guess there is a passing glimmer of thought about what will work.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 1:49PM
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Yellow is my favorite color, though I admit I don't have any of the plants so glamorously pictured in the attachment. The only yellow rose I have at present in my teeny tiny plot is Golden Wings. Of course I like all the colors, but I think if I were restricted to a one color scheme it would be a pastel shades of yellow along with lots of whites and cream.

Among my favorites are the pale yellow early species roses (such as cantabrigensis), yellow columbine, and yellow foxglove, and of course, daffodils and yellow viridiflora tulips. I also like witchhazels and fragrant yellow azaleas. And of course wild primroses. Not to mention the sublime banksia rose and mermaid rose (as seen in Venice). Most of these need a proper setting and my own garden isn't it. But a nice thing about a perennial garden, at least, is that different colors can predominate at different seasons.

Here is a link that might be useful: creamy primrose yellow

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 1:53PM
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Zone 9. TYPICAL. The old cat claw is coming around slow but sure. Best I can do up here in the Klondike.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 1:57PM
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wantonamara Z8 CenTex

Banksia rose and mermaid rose are real thrivers in most areas around here that HAVE soil. They will take drought and heat well if given a deep drink once or twice in the summer. You see them wild in the abandoned farm gardens.

I had both growing over my tall entry tunnel over my driveway in town at my old in town house ( well worked clay cut bank by the Colorado River). I never had to water them and they bloomed and climbed forever.Sigh.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 2:33PM
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I suppose it can suggest disease, but yellow foliage can also be great if you think of it as chartreuse. That is -- the color of the first budding leaves of spring, and also and especially the willow trees in March and April. I suppose you could think of red foliage that way, too, since a lot of first growth is often red or reddish. That is how I got over my early prejudices against colored foliage and became an enthusiast, at any rate.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 3:03PM
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Practical complaint against yellow (and white);
namely, difficult to photograph.

I love spring crocuses and hope to at least replace vole kills yearly

Below is just about as good a photograph as yellow (and white) will allow me, notably in an open location.
(April 11, 2011)

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 4:16PM
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I agree monarda. In my old house, way back when, I mixed lots of colored foliage in various shrubs. O. Grasses & ground covers. Reds & yellows were always a good combination, the yellow barberry's were hardest to get established but they looked great with the red and the yellow moneywort looked good as a ground cover especially when planted by something purplish/green. Yellow foliage never made me think of jaundice & disease.

There are pictures I've seen of heathers & heaths that have many subtle shades including yellow. If I lived in England I'd try to have it. Is anyone in the UK growing heathers?

There are also some great grasses with yellow foliage as well. Mexican Feather Grass appears yellow all summer & is a knock out for both light color & texture. Seslaria autumnalis is one + there are some yellow Sedge Grasses that are very nice. The striped yellow/green Miscanthus is popular & looks good in the right spot.

Colored foliage is high up on the priority list of what I look for in selecting plants. I lean hard toward blues, greys, olive, very deep green & yellow, it breaks up planted areas well & adds a lot of interest without always depending on flowers for color.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 4:21PM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

wontonamara - I thought the rocks might be limestone because I had a hazy impression that Texas soil was on the alkaline side... I love rock walls but they wouldn't suit the garden here. If I had rockwork like that I'd want to show it off - by whacking spent flowerstalks down to the base foliage to allow the rockwork to be more visible and make room for the next round of flowers to display well - that's what we do in the 'herb bed' (which contains much more than just herbs...) when the culinary sage finishes blooming. No finicky deadheading; just grab handfuls of flowerstalks and whack them off at the top of the foliage. Some still-blooming stalks get cut off too but the 'haircut' allows the sage leaves to display nicely as a foil for the next plants to flower.

I checked out the Artemisia ludoviciana ‘Valerie Finnis’. It's hardy here but the description includes this comment: 'This selection spreads less quickly than the older 'Silver King' - big red flag there for me! I suspect that one would rampage about here, so I won't be planting that one! I hope it's well-behaved for you... :-)

SunnyBorders - how long have you been growing the crocuses in the grass? I've been trying to establish some in the grass on the house side of the ditch by the road. We planted a mix of small, early bulbs (crocus, snowdrops, little bulb irises etc. in fall 2011. The display in March 2012 said we hadn't planted enough - even though we planted ~150... I hoped that they would multiply and make a better display in spring 2013. Nope....!
March 19 2012:

March 29 2013:

DH is not allowed to mow the grass in the ditch until the end of May in order to permit the bulb foliage to ripen. I suspect my bulbs-in-the-ditch enterprise is not going to be successful! We haven't had problems with voles here so that's not the reason.

The really sad thing about those pictures is the comparison with this spring - the ditch is still heaped with snow at the moment :-(

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 7:10PM
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gyr_falcon(Sunset 23 USDA 9)

Tecoma stans
Icelandic Poppies
tropical milkweed
Senna 'Buttercream'
kangaroo paw
Jasmine humile 'Revolution'
... I don't think I have a problem with yellow flowers. ;) I do think they look better with other colors, and help to bring out the best in other flowers. Yellow alone--nice. Yellow with purple, or red, or orange--stunning.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 9:31PM
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organic_greenjeans(Z 5/6 Eastern Washington)

First pollen available in my deck planters is always the fragrant yellow primrose, which were making the visiting honeybees very happy today!

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 10:13PM
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Woodyoak, those crocuses are actually in a flowerbed, but the angle of the picture hides the edge. The stems are of fall asters.

I've certainly seen Chionodoxa luciliae and Scilla siberica seeding into and spreading though lawns (and then on into everything else), but never crocuses.

David Tomlinson has sheets of crocuses, which he says seed into the two inches of wet maple leaves that he spreads over his herbaceous perennial beds every fall.
He has to use warfarin in (beer) cans, with the opening widened only enough to let voles in. He says he never gets all the voles, but is able to keep the problem from getting out of hand.

Our own garden is very much smaller than David's, so I don't have to poison the voles and simply plant more crocuses yearly.

The daffodils are safe because they are poisonous; so is Chionodoxa. However, I avoid most Chionodoxa, as it spreads in a very aggressive and haphazard way.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 10:37PM
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wantonamara Z8 CenTex

The party never ends

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 11:01PM
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wantonamara Z8 CenTex

Woodyoak, The valery finnis has been in that spot for 10 years. I keep it back with minimal sharing at plant swaps. It is quite well behaved for a Artemisia ludoviciana. We have some wild A. ludovicianas that are endemic down here that spread at a dead sprint.

I built the rock wall so I could bring in some dirt and I have a fair amount of elevation change and torrential downpours when it does rain. I don't need every inch to be seen. I like that things cascade over and overlap. I am a bit on the non OCD side of gardening. I bought a wild piece of land and I like that the wildness comes almost up to my front step. I am more into inserting plants into the wild and letting them duke it out, but You are welcomed to do some weeding here, any day. It is a work in progress.

My "garden " is not my true focus. I do a lot of forest restoration on acreage and that eats up most of my energies. You will find me with chainsaws hacking at underbrush, caging trees, building erosion berms, trying to control invasive and predators.. I have not really found a forum for that. I make it up as I go along.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 11:58PM
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She's the cutest little rosebud that I have ever seen.....the yella rose of Texas is the only gal fer me.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2014 at 12:20AM
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Greenjeans, thats a nice primrose. Here's one of our native varieties.
Missouri primrose, opens in the evening, this was shot at night.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2014 at 12:38AM
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These photos of Texas flowers are driving me crazy. Love them. I'm glad I have Texas blood.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2014 at 1:20AM
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Campanula UK Z8

Hey Wantonamara - I have just embarked on an insane woodland (I can hardly call it a 'woodland' and 'forest' would be a stretch too far) project which is, too be fair, scaring me sh**less. Oho, my home garden is 36 square metres of crammed chaos and my allotments are bigger, but still only 1/4 acre of open, sunny and gloriously (now) fertile, friable soil. I know (more or less) what I am doing. In contrast, the 5 acres of utterly neglected poplar plantation (and bramble, nettle and elder)......on a budget of around 37pence.....at an advanced stage of senility.......and not a bloody clue....... I know about 'making it up as I go along' - that's for sure.

    Bookmark   March 26, 2014 at 7:01PM
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wantonamara Z8 CenTex

I will email you about my experience in being a jungle trainer, an "ethnic cleanser" of Cedar brake. It would be too much to put on this thread and if I started another thread on this forum, it would be very off topic., Or, I can start a thread about this on the Texas forum, email you a link, and have you drop in. . We have not lynched a person from Out-of-state since I have been hanging out there.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2014 at 12:14AM
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Campanula UK Z8

oooh yes, please do - I have been following the discussion about Texan perennials (with some envy) and, although we do not have the searing Texan heat, neither do we have bitterly cold z5 winters either. Will head over there soon as.

Ps. I grow a number of Texas lovelies myself - especially the sphaeralceas and the delicious little Texas flax (linum rigida) and salvias, of course.

My e.mail will not work (and is resistant to being changed or edited on GW) but will happily PM you - so, so greedy for info!

    Bookmark   March 27, 2014 at 4:52AM
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funnthsun z7A - Southern VA

My entire foundation bed is done in soft yellow, lavender and wine colors. I love the way they contrast and sooth when grouped together. Yellow, not calming? I find that pale yellow is very calming without being depressing (as some calming colors are actually depressing colors to me). Yellow is the best color ever!!!!! My fav, it doesn't has to be harsh. I think every color is garish in some tones and soothing in others. So, I say it depends on the yellow with how you use it, how it impacts you and your garden, etc. Yellow can be a very subtle color when used in subtle tones. There is a reason why yellow houses are the best sellers (or, at least, used to be when people chose what they liked instead of going with the crowd and what designers told them was "in"). Yellow certainly can be a team player as well. It depends on the team...

    Bookmark   March 27, 2014 at 10:53AM
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funnthsun z7A - Southern VA

Now, if we were talking about PINK, I'd tell you how it's not allowed in my garden, not a stitch of it! No petal, no plant, no way, no how! Good thing we don't have strong opinions here, LOL :)

    Bookmark   March 27, 2014 at 10:56AM
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Very interesting Funnthsun,

Am guessing the yellow of those houses referred to interior paint colour rather than brick colour.

Am pro yellow too.

They can say it's the most fatiguing colour to the eye, but to me, yellow's still the happy colour!

    Bookmark   March 27, 2014 at 11:20AM
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kidhorn(7a MD)

I don't like yellow. Red and Orange are my favorites. Reminds me of a sunset.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2014 at 1:54PM
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geoforce(z7a SE PA)

Yellow has unique visual impact as it is the spectral range to which the eye is most sensitive. This makes it in demand where catching the eye is somewhat hard to achieve. Two areas where I couldn't do without it:

1. Against medium to deep shade zones as at edge of woods.

2. Early spring when sunlight may not be very bright to make other colors as appealing.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2014 at 2:09PM
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linnea56(z5 IL)

I’m prejudiced against strong yellows. When I started gardening I got a lot of pass along plants, plus used a mail order nursery my mom liked that had no pictures, therefore not knowing what color the blooms would be That was before the time of being able to Google search. It turned out about half of what I got were strong yellows, like coreopsis. They just overpowered everything else. I recall reading some where that the color yellow projects more than others, which is an evolutionary reason for its dominance. They are more visible to pollinators. I think they’d be fine if they had strong colors with them. When they fizzled out I didn’t replace them, as my main garden has more pastels, and I’m going for a calm look, as this is where I relax. I like soft yellows for that garden.

Recently I stated making a strip garden on the south side of the house, where it is very difficult to water. I chose more drought resistant plants for this spot. Turns out a lot of such plants are a hot orangey yellow. They don’t need to match pastels here. I am trying to put other similarly intense colors here, like deep purple and red. (I would welcome suggestions for bright colors in drought resistant plants).

In yet other beds (front yard) I am seriously getting into non blooming foliage plants. I love the contrasting yellowish foliage of some heucheras with the dark purple ones; Japanese forest grass, etc. . It’s hard to find yellow plants for there that will live very long, though, as it gets some intense sun there for a few hours. But that’s not true yellow, just yellow-ish.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2014 at 3:03PM
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I've lived in this house for less than a year. I don't have my gardens anywhere close to where I want them. Here is some of my color right now.

I love the burgundy pansies, but they wouldn't show up if I didn't have a bright color next to them.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2014 at 3:34PM
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Here is another area. The last freeze knocked out some of the color. I haven't mulched because I'm not finished planting. I've got a little bit of yellow and other bright colors here too. To me, the yellow helps the other colors look even better.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2014 at 3:40PM
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The colour yellow must be the most contentious colour in gardening.

Blue: a lot of us love blue flowers. It just wouldn't seem right to say "I don't like blue". Red flowers: most of us don't "see red" (more below) when we view red flowers.

But we heap praise and scorn on yellow.

My personal feeling is "so what if yellow pokes you in the eye, it's still supposed to make you happy".

But maybe is all a matter of evolution (indicated above). Other things being equal, human beings see best in the yellow part of the visible light spectrum. So we can be more discriminating; hence see more to argue about.

I have recently read that human beings see best in the yellow to red part of the visible light spectrum.

So how come we don't argue about red flowers in the garden?

When gardeners object, they don't "see red", they "see yellow"!

P.S. I take it all back.

This post was edited by SunnyBorders on Thu, Mar 27, 14 at 17:35

    Bookmark   March 27, 2014 at 5:12PM
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The color yellow is contentious only in a more formal or conventional type of garden.

In a naturalized garden its a moot point. All colors are welcome in principle.

Those who plant the gardens shown above like Sunnyborders or who make comments such as those by woodyoak obviously lean toward the structured, conventional & controlled garden approach.

The Texas gardens shown above are naturalized. A romping artemisia would not a problem in such a garden, many plants are left to romp at will or seed about to produce a naturalized garden. That is what a naturalized garden is. There are no clean clipped borders or the typical edged lawn in such a garden. You will not see plants that are a result of hybridizing to produce variegated foliage, huge and/or double sterile flowers & other such nursery bred novelties, these would look silly, overdone & out of place.

My point is, some of the plants shown in the posts would look like "weeds" in a naturalized landscape if you use term weed correctly as "a plant that has no business growing there" because it is out of character in that setting. This principle works both ways. Many plants that look excellent in a naturalized gardens would look weedy in a conventional landscape or garden.

The idea that yellow is a problem is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to disagreeing or not having much in common concerning goals, personal taste & opinions. When having a discussion, its best to establish an understanding in the beginning of what kind of garden a person prefers, although it usually becomes obvious by the pictures and comments. Case in point--mammoth mums. Thats a tip off right there.

This post was edited by TexasRanger10 on Fri, Mar 28, 14 at 17:42

    Bookmark   March 28, 2014 at 4:47PM
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As said, I definitely don't intend to colour coordinate mixed perennial beds. The measure of a perennial's value to me rest much more with practical matters such as it's "tameness" (e.g. not running or seeding).

But TexasRanger makes a valid point; namely, that marked colour preference seem often associate with more formal/ conventional types of gardening.

Presumably we all fit somewhere on scales of opposites, such as controlled/structured versus naturalized gardening. Personally, I aim for a garden which maximizes dense and changing colour and I find that definitely requires energetic control.

As to structure, I wouldn't want structure to ever be too obvious. Aiming for a colourful informality is just fine.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2014 at 5:43PM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

I certainly garden with a greater tendency to incorporate a structure that some (most?) see as formal, but I don't see the need - or value - in putting restrictive labels/making the choice an either/or one. I like to combine a 'wild'/natural feel within a more structured framework - I find that the 'formal' parts make the natural parts feel wilder, while the 'wild' elements make the 'formal' bits feel more formal.

Context matters too - this part of the country wants to be a woodland with layers of groundcover, perennials, shrubs, and trees. Green is the default color. While the front garden here is the colorful, largely conventional, 'public' face of the garden, the backyard is a woodland garden, set within a quasi-formal structure - but one which is intended to reproduce the feel of the farm-fields-and-bush environment of the east coast property where I grew up. A few years ago a friend who grew up in the same area visited here for the first time. She commented that the garden felt like 'home' - with 'home' meaning our shared childhood landscape. That is the best compliment my garden has ever received! Most people see the rectangular lawn in the backyard woodland-themed garden here as a odd formal element but my friend could see that it is based on the hayfields and pastures surrounded by woods in the landscape of our youth.

A Texas or other dryland garden will - and should! - look different from one in a northern temperate mixed forest environment. Vive la différence!

    Bookmark   March 28, 2014 at 6:26PM
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Maybe it can be broken down into categories? Starting from the wildest and working toward more control. Categories might look a bit like this? Except #2 and #3 are really rather close to the same thing.

*wild landscape>> natural indigenous plants, landscape on the side of the road or an acreage being managed.

*native wildflower garden>>butterfly, prairie or meadow garden.

*naturalized garden>>landscape incorporating natives shrubs & wildflowers blending in with the surrounding landscape with a transition zone.

*cottage garden>>English inspired look, lots of plants selected for flowers and color. Densely planted mainly for a floral effects and concentrating on bloom time of different plants for this purpose.

*conventional garden>>Typical suburban front yard w/shrubs, perennials and/or seasonal annuals in well defined beds. Well clipped & defined lawn area. Most people fall into this category.

*formal garden>>Lots of hybrid perennials shrubs & trees, much emphasis on planning & design, corporate & residential uses, very controlled and manicured. Often uses colorful annuals in mass plantings that are changed out in spring, summer & then fall.

*Then there's those big public European inspired gardens that take lots of maintenance, money & employees .

Which ever direction a person leans, discussions about topics like the color yellow can be like comparing chickens to horses & often results in talking at cross purposes. Its not so much about the color yellow, for example, its about the style of the garden.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2014 at 6:52PM
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katob Z6ish, NE Pa

I don't think anyone would mistake this for a Texas planting, unless it's a one week annual planting in February!
I love this mix in tulips of white and pale yellow in the same bloom, the closeby daffodil planting was more a case of me forgetting what was where when I popped the bulbs in. I was surprised by how much I liked the mix.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2014 at 9:13PM
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katob Z6ish, NE Pa

I'm loving the photos in this thread, it sure goes a long way in stirring up the spring fever!
Here's a mix of yellow plus variegation... a doubling up of two of the plants that might not be a good fit for your house Woody!
The picture is from Chanticleer- variegated boston ferns, hakonechloa, and some other stuff I don't know.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2014 at 9:21PM
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wantonamara Z8 CenTex

Kato, tulips and daffies and jonquils last three days maybe and need to be planted every year. ( not the jonquils). I ripped mine out . they looked so outs of place and were gone in a blink when they flowered.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2014 at 9:57PM
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wantonamara Z8 CenTex

I think the garden we get is the garden we deserve. And that is a combination of wants, environmental practicalities, possibilities, style, capabilities and effort spent.

I need strong colors to combat the strong light. Got to be able to see it when you are squinting and sweating out in the sun. If we are in drought, even our shade is compromised by not enough leaves in the trees and the trees are holding them at an angle.

xeric is usually yellow , white, red. My palette is reduced, but I don't miss it. I get to have it in spring and treasure it then. Blues are ephemeral in the spring mostly. I think Texas shoots its blue wad with all those Blue bonnets, showy primrose, paintbrushes. I get salvia farinacea to bloom white and blue into the early summer. Guys in town have a kinder environment but even there people are leaning away from the things that need constant care (= constant water) because of strict water rationing. Desert willows give us some lavenders and pale pinks in the summer, so it is not all a wash out. My rosemaries are blooming blue now. Other salvias give us lots of warm reds, strong pinks, violets, fuchsias and even a peach or two but those usually need more water. Come fall, the purples and colors and midnight blues come back for a great showing.

Some pale colors can be more apparent in the shade. I do not garden for color as much as for that frozen magical moment. Like in October I place a Salvia regal in a spots in deep shade normally but when the low sun rakes in and stabs that blooming bush, it is on fire. I plan for the sense of scale as I look across the field. I garden more for lights and darks and structure. Color is the surprise.

To be honest , I am happy with whatever I get. To me, garden ins a case of serendipity from start to finish. I accept that I am not in control. My act of faith is scattering the seed and seeing the laitris increasing in my field, year by year.

My eye is never to fatigued for a gander at a yellow englmanni daisy or 4 nerve daisy.

This post was edited by wantonamara on Fri, Mar 28, 14 at 23:44

    Bookmark   March 28, 2014 at 10:11PM
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Those bulbs could be a Texas planting or any other state in the union for that matter, so thinking that couldn't be Texas is not at all accurate. Daffs & jonquils are perennial here where I live, tulips need to be replanted each fall. I don't grow bulbs because they are so common I can easily enjoy them elsewhere. All are blooming in profusion right now. Iris is common here too, as are all the typical spring blooming trees and shrubs most people in other zones or states would associate with early spring.

When summer sets in, thats a different matter. Of course, there are those refined souls with certain tastes in gardening & plants who have installed sprinkler systems with timers that go on every other day & they selfishly insist on growing plants that need supplemental water all summer along with the required green lawn as if water is not restricted & there is an unlimited supply.

Maybe these people come from another part of the country & insist on recreating the same garden elsewhere. Maybe its entitlement or selfishness. Maybe nursery's encourage it with their selections and they think native plants are somehow not to their taste. Whatever is the motivation, I am not impressed, although I think I am supposed to be, its so "pretty". Instead, it makes me sick to see it & has made me dislike certain kinds of plants/gardens over the years.

Many of the plants I see on this forum are grown here by those who insist on doing it because the nursery's carry the flashy thirstier hybrids & people buy them each year. Its irritating when the selection of more suitable native plants are low & that so many people stay in traditional patterns of gardening & plant choices.

The native plants are showing up more than in the past but its difficult to change people especially when most can only come up with a couple types of plants, such as echinacea or rudebeckia when they think of natives or cactus & gravel when someone suggests xeric.

Its not a matter of "can't grow it" its a matter of "should you grow it". I personally don't feel any plant or garden is worth wasting water anymore.

This post was edited by TexasRanger10 on Sat, Mar 29, 14 at 1:38

    Bookmark   March 29, 2014 at 12:44AM
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"Entitlement or selfishness" ?

Environmental awareness or social consciousness aside, gardeners discussing colour can be a bit like other people discussing politics or religion.

Still I'm on the side of colour (or color).

Picture below (October 20, 2013, repeated). Not much colour left then in the garden. I'd say blue and red (and green) are as good as yellow and yellow is as good as blue and red (and green).

Very attractive picture, Kato.
Thanks. It does remind us that there's more to an achieving an attractive gardening outcome than just relying on bloom colour.

This post was edited by SunnyBorders on Sat, Mar 29, 14 at 13:24

    Bookmark   March 29, 2014 at 1:21PM
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When I said entitled or selfish, I was referring to what I continue to observe each summer with local people who live in drought conditions & still insist on planting whatever they want. They install sprinkler systems & turn them on every other day, some do it every day. The lakes are down, we have had only 20% of our average rainfall for this time so far this year. One lake currently has less water in it than the amount used last year.

The nursery's do not help. They offer the typical flashy thirsty stuff & people keep buying it. It is frustrating because a dose of reality & some common sense would go a long way in plant choices & introducing more suitable plants which would help to change peoples attitudes in plant selections. If the selections aren't there, people are going to continue to buy what is offered, meaning the standard nursery fare that is easy to find everywhere.

Other plants exist & many of us would like to see these being offered as better choices for our conditions. As it is, they are hard to find. I get most of my plants from growing seed or trades.

As it happens, the color yellow plays a big part in a dry garden as the photos indicate so to poo poo the entire color causes a response. Around here, plants such as Mammoth Mums would require wasteful quantities of watering to get them through summer. If I wanted mums, which I don't, I'd buy nursery plants in fall & let some nursery pay to keep them watered. As it is, there are other fall blooming plants that do not need that.

The look of a dry garden is such that the plants you grow in your garden would appear jarringly out of place. Different gardens have their own characteristics & what works in in a dry garden has a unified look that ties the plants together.

Do not take that as a comment on your garden, it is my story told from where I live.

This post was edited by TexasRanger10 on Sat, Mar 29, 14 at 20:12

    Bookmark   March 29, 2014 at 2:05PM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

Texas Ranger - I think the other key element in changing the garden practices in droughty areas is getting wider exposure for attractive gardens that use regionally-appropriate water-wise plantings. If the commonly visible models are of the water-hog type, that is what the people who want easy 'curb appeal' gardens without too much thought, will emulate. So badger/assist local garden centers to make attractive groupings of appropriate plants and/or display gardens; if you have a local horticultural society that has a garden tour, try to get them to increase the number of attractive 'native'-type gardens on the tour - volunteer your own garden to be a host garden...?; post pictures on forums etc. where people go for information, showing and talking up the beauty and ease of the plants without being too 'heavy' about it :-) A sad fact is that most homeowners are not gardeners so they just want to do what's easy and accepted/expected. It's a hard, slow process to change expectations; old habits die hard!

    Bookmark   March 29, 2014 at 2:30PM
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Golden Rain Tree


    Bookmark   March 29, 2014 at 3:40PM
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View from a window in Spring.


    Bookmark   March 29, 2014 at 3:43PM
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Uh, don't really think I'm the badgering type, committees & such give me hives & the plate is pretty full already. Think I'll just stick to the track I'm on & keep plugging away hoping to find others interested in the same plants. As far as posting pic on forums, I just did. Don't mean to come off heavy, just reporting the situation, using some common sense & making a case for yellow flowers. I do believe we have a softer look here & fortunately I prefer the look of xeric plants.

Who knows, maybe some other people are successfully gardening in similar situations & may pop in, its possible. Wantamara is one & she had a couple plants I was unfamiliar with.

Jane, That Golden Raintree is stunning. Nice color.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2014 at 4:07PM
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Yellows in a flower box

Yellow and reds in a flower box on the deck
I love the combination of pinks, purples, reds and yellows

A yellow orchid


    Bookmark   March 29, 2014 at 4:22PM
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Texas Ranger, I totally agree with you. Most of my pics were taken when I lived in NY. Totally different growing environment than south Florida, where I live now.

I have always had a fondness for yellows. I think they make a garden pop and draw your eye to the garden or container. They make a striking contrast with reds, pinks and purples. Without yellow, those colors fade into the background.

I am presently planting yellow foliage bushes interspersed throughout my garden bed to add contrast to any flowers I plant. In my new, hot environment, I am trying to eliminate grass and plant only flowers which are native or can tolerate low rain and heat. It is still new to me, but I know yellows will be a part of it.

I can't imagine a garden without yellows.


    Bookmark   March 29, 2014 at 4:30PM
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Jane, I sure do like that lantana with the hot pink petunias. I just finished planting the last lantana plant in the ground that I started from seeds. I went crazy with them along a long dry border where I have some pretty bad soil and it stays dry. I've got 6 flavors of them going now.

I think of Bougainvillea when I first hear Florida because I can't grow it here & like it so much. Maybe they are like Crepe Myrtles here, one growing in nearly every street median & yard causing me to snub them as too common. Woops, off topic, neither of those is yellow. But they do go good with yellow.

You have what wantanamara would describe as comic book colors in that third shot, I love it. I get that fun combination all on one plant with the yellow flowers & the long red stamens on the Yellow Bird of Paradise (Caesalpinia gilliesii). Its pretty gaudy. There in Florida you can grow the better red kind thats not hardy here. There are a lot of plants from Mexico I really wish I could grow so I'd be tempted to break the native Florida rule in that zone & finally get to do more than look at pictures. It would be fun to have so many flower possibilities in winter.

I got rid of all the grass here too, the lawn kind anyway, made the whole place more colorful. I keep adding silver & blue foliage plants. I like the way its sets off other colors plus they are usually "ever-silver" adding something nice in winter to go with the soft maize colored dormant grasses.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2014 at 8:07PM
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katob Z6ish, NE Pa

I think most people want what they see. There's not much thought to it and they just want pretty much what most of the neighbors have.
When I lived in Texas the first things I planted were agaves, sages, and heirloom amaryllis bulbs from a neighbor. I loved all the wildflowers and my landlord was getting nervous since I would mow around all the winecups and alliums and spring beauties that were in my less than perfect lawn... his response was to give me a Bradford pear since I "was into planting things". I just saw on Google streetview that it still hasn't died and keeps growing like the weed it is.
So I don't think it matters much where you're from, it matters what your influences are.
The Dallas arboretum always had an amazing display of tulips and daffodils and other spring bulbs... all disposable, but I'm sure many visitors wanted it for their own gardens.
Jane I was just thinking how I don't like gold all that much, but that orchid is amazing!

Woody- I planted 500 crocus and it still wasn't too impressive a patch. Mine were the snow crocus, and they're early enough to do well in a lawn, but the grass is still so dead looking that the colors don't show up as well.
I would try and duplicate Sunnyborder's planting. The dutch hybrid crocus do very well in a flower bed like that and if you put them a little further in you won't even notice the foliage ripening later.... and if you dig them up accidentally throughout the year they seem to like the replanting and spreading out.
How about a few colchicums in the lawn? Bigger leaves but they die down just as fast, and compete well with grass.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2014 at 10:07PM
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diggerdee zone 6 CT

Texas Ranger, I agree with your comments on planting zone-appropriate and ... condition-appropriate plants, if "condition" is the right word. Not only condition for the spot you are planting (i.e. not planting a thirsty plant in a hot, dry spot of one's yard) but in general, I think, even in places like CT which are not as dry as Texas, we have to consider the growing water shortage in the world, and should do our part to help by planting natives and xerics, etc.

And I agree that nurseries need to play a part in that, by promoting native and appropriate plants.

I absolutely cringe when I pass by a house whose watering system is going when it's raining out. I admit to being somewhat anti-watering system to begin with (I think lawns in general use too many fertilizers, too much water, and too much fossil fuel to maintain), but when I see the sprinklers working in a rainfall, it gets my goat.

Jane, your photos are very colorful and VERY welcome on this dreary day. I find your use of red, yellow and pink interesting, as they are strictly segregated in my garden, lol! I'll use yellow with pinks and purples, and yellows with reds and oranges, but I hardly ever use them all together. Maybe I'll take a step out of my color comfort zone this year with some container plantings....


    Bookmark   March 30, 2014 at 10:44AM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

kato - I just found out yesterday that our town is doing a storm water management study this year in the areas of town, like ours, where storm water is 'managed' with roadside ditches. It sounds like there's a reasonable possibility that the ditches will be replaced in a year or two with an 'engineered' (i.e. buried pipes etc.) system. If that's the case, there's no point in adding new bulbs because they'll likely all be dug up! I just hope my 'moat bed' along the top of the ditch will survive since parts of it are actually on the setback strip that belongs to the town. I'd particularly hate to lose the wisteria trees in that bed - assuming they've survived this winter! (I can see some buds swelling on the Chinese wisteria but can't tell if any are flowerbuds and I can't get close enough to the Japanese one to see if any buds survived on that one. The wisterias blooming are one of the highlights of spring that we most look forward to.)

The moat bed May 31 2013:

    Bookmark   March 30, 2014 at 11:01AM
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Kato, I agree, most people mainly want pretty. The flowers are usually the biggest draw & there's all that joyous optimistic buying in spring. I don't blame the privately owned nursery's as much as places like Home Depot & Walmart & its that kind of typical fare of familiar plants that sells. Unless people are up on plants, they have no inkling beyond the visual. Private nursery's will answer questions & point out such things as water wise.

Locally its hard to avoid knowing about the drought condition. We have always had these periodic patterns, its the norm. 2012 & 2013 killed so many plants, trees & shrubs that many people are now interested in wiser choices, you know how it works, once the thing hits you in your backyard, its no longer just talk & you finally see what the hollering has been about.

Diggerdee, The biggest water hogging culprit is lawns. Seeing a sprinkler going on a rainy day is common with the number of systems set on automatic timers but the thing that really REALLY makes me cringe, or see red to be more accurate, is the sheer numbers of systems going on & off in all those average middle class neighborhoods. It used to be something you'd see only on golf courses or rich peoples triple sized lawns. That makes you stop and think in terms of gallonssssssss. You see the water running down the street into drainage holes. Its a case of the dumbass multiplied by 1000's & for what? Bermuda Grass. Or worse, high maintenance fescue.

I got into xeric plants way before the drought simply because I like them better. Many of the plants have deep tap roots which makes them difficult candidates for commercial plant sales & are best started from seed or tiny plants. Often they look scrubby & dull up next to the brighter typical nursery plants so they don't really catch the eye, they definitely aren't at their visual best in that situation. Of course, yellow is a big color in xeric choices & many don't go for it or grey foliage either.

One of my own favs is yellow flowers on a grey/blue foliage plant.

I'm forever on the lookout for them & its always a red letter day when I find an odd duck plant like that. Usually I am disappointed because there is nothing much sold like that in the average places around here.

However, if you go to a nursery that specializes in such plants, the effect is entirely different. You then see the over all look of textures/colors, its a much softer quieter effect especially when its without the contrast & distraction of the more commonly sold greener & more colorful nursery plants.

Sorry this is getting off topic.

    Bookmark   March 30, 2014 at 2:43PM
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paul_(z5 MI)

Can be rather amusing, in some respects, to hear other folks opinions. (In other respects, it can be down right aggravating.)

The original topic: yellow

Personally, I'm a big yellow fan ... especially of clean, bright yellows. It's possible, I suppose, that there is some gypsy somewhere in the family gene pool -- I like riots of color in the flowerbeds ... bright reds, yellows & oranges, deep rich purples & reds. I also like a variety of form and structure. I can't say it always harmonizes well, but I'm okay with that.

My parents' house is a pale shade of yellow and always has been. Looks nice with the dark green of the woods behind it and the trees in front of it.

Pastels tend to bore me, although I freely admit to having seen gardens with a pastel palette that were quite beautiful.

Whites are one of my least favorites in flower color. Oh they can be spectacular when the flower first opens, but as the flower ages, whites tend to get ratty looking far faster than most other colors, IMO. If you are willing & able to deadhead daily you can keep on it, but otherwise ...

Regarding the trendy designers poo-pooing yellow or any other plant/color as too plebian, they can shove it where the sun don't shine and rotate a while. I've never had much tolerance for the fashion mavens ... whether it be clothing, plants, pets, whatever. Even less patience for the brainless twits who hang on their every word.

Crocus in lawn topic:
Have crocus and anemone in my folks' lawn. I just scatter the seeds. Crocus foliage blends in well with grass. As my dad generally has the lawnmower blade set rather high (better for water retention of the lawn) the foliage persists throughout the summer.

My dad would hate living in those types of arid areas ... he is very much into the lawn look.

Can't say I'd be thrilled either. While I am not a fan of "the lawn", I do enjoy many of the plants that would never survive in hot arid regions without a lot of pampering. That said, if I did live in such an area, my water lovers would be indoors with me. Outdoors would have to submit to those plants that could handle the conditions as well as xeriscaping with stone.

I think some folks who are transplants from more water rich areas probably get homesick for the familiar -- hence the lawn and water hog plants. Others, as has been stated, have no clue and are simply following what our culture promotes as "what you should grow".

How about all the idiots in Nevada -- especially Las Vegas -- with the lawns, golf courses, huge outdoor fountains & swimming pools? Same goes for those in southern California or any other similar region and who then complain about the water shortages and "Why can't we just take more water from the Colorado River (which "obviously" must be an unlimited supply)?". Morons!

(Not that I have any strong feelings on the subject. hehe)

    Bookmark   March 31, 2014 at 4:17PM
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There's a town close by that shares the lake I mentioned with a large city, the lake that has less water in it currently than was used liberally last year by the greedy hogs with the lovely green manicured lawns in the bigger city. The city claimed rights to this lake way back when & the poor town is getting pretty thirsty as a result.

The water hogs are belly aching about getting fined for breaking the law over water restrictions, which they seem to think doesn't really apply to them. "The Audacity!" I have heard them talk, I use the word entitlement justifiably. Sorry if that offends anyone.

The little town folk are raising a catty wompus over the waste they see going on in the big city, understandably a they're a tad bit worked up and resentful, running out of water does strange things to folks.

In the meantime, people in the big city are already running their sprinklers regularly as clockwork on the dormant bermuda. The word moron fits here. Makes me want to puke. "Moron" is too nice a word for them. Greedy & all swole up with themselves is how I see it. They want what they want & there's an end to that discussion.

There is one good white that doesn't fade & blooms all season. Blackfoot Daisy, the plant never stops blooming & it doesn't need a "drinkie" either, it can get by on what falls from the sky for free. I think white roses always look dirty pretty quickly.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2014 at 5:11PM
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delete double post

This post was edited by TexasRanger10 on Mon, Mar 31, 14 at 18:00

    Bookmark   March 31, 2014 at 5:58PM
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Another great yellow (Aug 31, 2013).

Helenium 'Sonnenwunder'.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2014 at 7:31PM
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I think one appreciates colors even more when one reflects on their symbolism and associations. The blogger Ferrebeekeeper, who often writes about color, informs us that: "In dynastic China, the color yellow was considered to be the most beautiful and prestigious color. Yellow was symbolically linked with the land itself and the turning of tao: thus yellow became associated with the mandate of heaven -- the emperor’s divine prerogative over the middle kingdom. Huang Di, the mythical first emperor of China (who was worshiped as a culture hero and a powerful magician/sage) was more commonly known as 'the yellow emperor'. ... During the Ming dynasty, when a yellow glaze was discovered for porcelain, it was initially the exclusive provenance of the imperial household."

Here is a link that might be useful: Imperial Yellow

    Bookmark   March 31, 2014 at 11:04PM
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Is that a Red shift coreopsis?

I'm surprised it did well for me. I really liked the blooms. I had it in full sun for a while, then the maple tree decided to branch and I lost any kind of sun. I should have moved it, but I had forgot about it.

    Bookmark   April 3, 2014 at 7:23PM
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pam_whitbyon(6 Niagara)

I'm really enjoying this in-depth dialogue on just one colour. Fascinating. Like so many others here, I never deliberately set out to have yellow in my garden, but I do enjoy how it makes arrangements pop right out and I can't ignore that whole yellow/happy thing. It's so true!

These are my favourite yellow flowers - marguerite daisy (argyranthemum). They are annuals here but look so good with my perennials. Indispensible to me. Here they are with lamb's ears and some type of catmint.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2014 at 5:47PM
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diggerdee zone 6 CT

Beautiful combination, pam! Lovely, soft yellow color!


    Bookmark   April 9, 2014 at 9:20PM
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pam_whitbyon(6 Niagara)

Thanks, Dee! Yes, I love the pale, soft yellow and it seems to go with everything.

I've had trouble finding them every year but this year a local nursery has promised to order some and put a few aside for me. Counting the days now... 15 more days until the last frost date!

    Bookmark   April 14, 2014 at 3:38PM
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Yellow on the wild side--- yellow dyssodia, silver primrose, macrocentra opuntia, polyacantha opuntia & purple flopping liatris.

I love those little yellow subshrubs, you really can't have too many cuz they just bloom & bloom........& bloom. Seems its usually the yellow blooming perennials that are good for doing that.

This post was edited by TexasRanger10 on Mon, Apr 14, 14 at 17:37

    Bookmark   April 14, 2014 at 4:46PM
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wantonamara Z8 CenTex

Is that Liatris muncronato? Love the purple and yellow. That seems to be a very fall combo.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2014 at 11:53PM
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I think L. punctata, its from Kansas. It is not happy or else just drunk-- maybe its crawling from too much spring rain on the bottom of the slope? It put out those snakey stems in early August, then it put up a bunch of new straight ones that bloomed in fall which was sort of weird. The ones planted up higher on the slope were straight, much shorter & bloomed later. I sent a big bagful of seed south down Austin way.

This post was edited by TexasRanger10 on Tue, Apr 15, 14 at 1:56

    Bookmark   April 15, 2014 at 1:54AM
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wantonamara Z8 CenTex

I scattered them in the front field a month ago. Maybe they are out there germinating in the rain water right now.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2014 at 2:00AM
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daisyincrete Z10? 905feet/275 metres

I love the yellow argyranthemums too.
This one is Jamaica Primrose with Miscanthus Cosmopolitan.

It flowers much longer than my other argyranthemums do.
They all fizzle out in the heat of the summer, but this one just keeps going.

Californian poppies.


and narcissus


self seeded verbascum

and I seem to have lots of yellow roses.


    Bookmark   April 17, 2014 at 12:17PM
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diggerdee zone 6 CT

Daisy, gorgeous pics of a beautiful garden! What is that kind of apricot-y rose with... is it larkspur? Some kind of Austin? Just lovely!


    Bookmark   April 17, 2014 at 8:04PM
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MaeT(z5 NL, Canada)

Golden stargazer from my garden 2013.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2014 at 8:29PM
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daisyincrete Z10? 905feet/275 metres

Dee, the rose is Buff Beauty. Easy, scented and flowers all summer.
The little blue flower with it is Consolida regalis Blue Cloud.
It is an annual/biennial. I sowed the seed last November and they started flowering in February.

Lovely lilies Maet.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2014 at 7:06AM
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I ran across this last night & am finding myself in love with narrow leaf zinnias. I like the bright orange/yellow or yellow ones, I had seen the pink & white ones but was never drawn to them. I like this natural wild look.

Is anyone growing this? I read it blooms all summer into fall. I've snubbed zinnias forever, until now.

Is it too late to sow zinnia seeds? If not is it easy & successful to direct sow?

    Bookmark   April 25, 2014 at 6:26PM
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Can't help.
Below: where we're at today.

Crocus flavus.
Seems less affected by the continuing cold spells than the larger purple and white Dutch crocuses.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2014 at 7:57PM
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